Divorce is a uniquely difficult life transition that will directly affect your finances and parental rights as you move forward into your post-divorce future. Having a better understanding of the process and your legal rights within it is critical. The most important step you can take to help ensure that your rights are well protected throughout your divorce is consulting with an experienced divorce lawyer in St. Paul.
If your divorce involves children, your child custody arrangements are naturally of primary importance. In the State of Minnesota, child custody is addressed in terms of both physical custody – or parenting time – and legal custody. Together, these reflect the full scope of parental rights and responsibilities.
Parenting time sets the schedule that determines when your children are with you and when they are with their other parent. While your scheduling options are considerable (if you are able to come to a mutually acceptable determination), one of you will either become the primary custodial parent (who spends the majority of the time with the children), or you will both divide your parenting time more equally.
Legal custody lays out who will be making the important parenting decisions moving forward, including those related to the following:
You and your ex can make these decisions between yourselves, or one of you can take on the sole responsibility. There are, however, other options that include making the decisions between yourselves but allowing one of you to break a tie (if it becomes necessary to do so) or dividing this responsibility between you according to the kind of decision that needs to be made.
Child support is the state’s way of ensuring that both parents continue to support their children financially post-divorce, and it employs a specific calculation process. While a range of factors goes into this determination, the parent who brings in more income – even if he or she is awarded equal parenting time – generally has the child support obligation.
During your marriage, you and your spouse acquired assets and properties between you, and they are all considered marital property (regardless of who purchased the item or signed the title), which must be divided between you equitably (or fairly) in the event of a divorce. This division of assets has a tendency to be one of the most challenging aspects of divorce.
The matter of alimony – or spousal maintenance – is only a concern in those divorces that leave one spouse unable to reasonably support himself or herself financially. If the other spouse has the means to help, alimony may be awarded.
If you are headed toward divorce, the compassionate divorce lawyers at Atticus Family Law in St. Paul have the experience, drive, and legal insight to help protect your rights – in pursuit of beneficial divorce terms that work for you. Learn more by contacting us today.
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